The U.S. Senate last month unanimously passed a bill that would explicitly make lynching a federal crime. Not everyone, however, is pleased with passage of the Justice for Victims of Lynching Act.
Liberty Counsel, an evangelical nonprofit that opposes gay rights, and its chairman, Mat Staver, are taking issue with the bill’s inclusion of LGBTQ people.
"The old saying is once that camel gets the nose in the tent, you can't stop them from coming the rest of the way in," Staver said in an interview with conservative Christian news outlet OneNewsNow. “This is a way to slip it in under a so-called anti-lynching bill, and to then to sort of circle the wagon and then go for the juggler [sic] at some time in the future."
Staver told OneNewsNow that his organization, which has been labeled an anti-LGBTQ “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center, is lobbying lawmakers in the House to have them remove the bill’s “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” language before taking a vote.
Similarly, the group encouraged Congress in November to remove language about "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" discrimination from a trade agreement with Mexico and Canada.
Liberty Counsel did not immediately respond to NBC News' request for comment.